The wheels are going to have to fall off. We are going to have to take out team all apart in order to figure out how everything fits together correctly and works best. Did we get excited because we won the first two games and hoped that the season would just magically be wonderful? Yes. Were those two games possibly won by sheer intestinal fortitude by the boys? Yes. Will we still end up in the playoff hunt? Absolutely.
Yes, a win at home in front of a sell-out crowd would have been wonderful. If we could have traded the Kings game where we blew them out 6 to 3 for a tough 2 to 0 loss to Columbus, it would have been ideal. It was a grinding game. This is our style now. The basics of our system were still the same for the home opener. Our fowards were defensively responsible and Bryz was solid. We drew a ton of penalties by our speed and grit. With 3 penalties against us, we were pretty disciplined. Our penalty kill looked solid. These are all steps forward. Our defensemen were a bit lost and we were defeated. It just takes more tweaking. Like I said, we are going to have to take the team apart and put it back together to see how it can work best.
Patience is a virtue and it doesn’t seem like we can afford to have patience. Keeping our team through the court battle was a long and tedious path. The path to the playoffs is equally long and tedious. We have to keep the faith and trust that it will play out how it needs to.
Stars of the Week:
1) Goalies! Bryz and LaBarbara had a great opening week. Bryz was a little sketch against power plays on opening night, but our PK didn’t help. Barb, you stood on your head for the Buffalo game, props.
2) Radim Vrbata ~ Welcome back. You are our offense. No pressure.
3) Peter Mueller ~ You haven’t scored yet Pete, but you are EVERYWHERE on the ice. You are doing the little things.
Overrated ~ Jovo ~ JOVO! You had me fooled! Those first games, you looked like a man who had been rejuvenated by the fountain of youth. Silly me. Pylon!
Underrated ~ Vern Fiddler ~ I knew we got you for faceoffs. Your hits, breakaways, and standing up for teammates is endearing you to me with great quickness.
Sharks: Marty, our hopes lie with you.
Blues: Good start to the year, we’ll have to grind this one out.
Bruins: I will never regret losing Wheeler. He may be with the Rampage right now, but I firmly believe that Tikhonov > Wheeler. You can’t teach attitude.